Getting ready to sell your home? Thinking about hiring a realtor to sell your home? Finding it more than a little bit stressful? Believe us, we relate. Putting a home on the market can be complicated—so much so that you may be unsure where to begin. A real estate agent can simplify the process by acting as your guide, but how do you know if you’ve found the right Realtor to sell your home? The good news is, asking a few simple questions can help you find a professional who’s experienced, trustworthy, and great at what they do!
If you’re hiring a Realtor to sell your home, here are seven questions you should ask during the interview process…
1) How well do you know my neighbourhood?
How far away are the schools closest to your home? What are commute times like to downtown Ottawa? Is there a homeowner’s association—and if so, how does it impact residents? Your agent should be able to answer these questions without hesitation, so be sure to ask them how long they’ve been working in the neighbourhood. They don’t necessarily have to live in the area, but they should be able to talk about like a local!
2) Can I see some sample marketing materials?
It’s simple. Marketing a home ineffectively is one of the biggest mistakes sellers make. If home hunters don’t know your property exists, it’ll probably wind up sitting on the market for—well, a very long time. If they find a compelling listing or gorgeous flyer that shows off its best qualities? That’s a different story! An experienced agent should be able to create polished marketing materials for you, complete with high-quality photos. Before you hire a Realtor to sell your home, ask to see what they’ve created for sellers in the past.
3) How many homes have you sold in the past year?
When you’re searching for an agent, we believe that finding the right fit (someone you genuinely get along with) is important. But at the end of the day, you want to work with a professional who can sell your home. That’s why it’s so important to ask every Realtors you’re considering about their track record. You’d be surprised how many agents only sell a couple of homes a year—or none at all!
4) Do you have any affiliations or memberships I should know about?
We’re always impressed when sellers ask us about our credentials. The truth is, they matter. At the very least, you should work with an agent who’s a member of the Ottawa Real Estate Board and the Multiple Listing Service®. That said, other accreditations can also be helpful. As just one example, working with a Realtor who’s a Seller Representative Specialist could give you a leg up during your home sale.
5) Can you give me an idea of what your marketing plan might look like for my home?
Early on, an experienced agent should have a good idea of what your marketing plan will look like. That includes the mix of materials they’ll use to achieve the outcome you’re looking for. As far as we’re concerned, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. Every home is different, and every seller has different needs. No matter who you work with, you should expect to hear about how they’re going to market your home—and how the choices they make will help you gain an advantage!
6) How do you price homes?
We’re not kidding when we say, pricing is both an art and a science. Doing it right means knowing the stats in your neighbourhood (like how much money homes like yours have recently sold for) and how to assess them. It means understanding the local market, the psychology of buyers, and the value of your home’s unique features. An experienced agent should fully understand the factors that go into pricing a home—and be able to explain it to you in detail.
Of course, it never hurts to have a good idea of what your house is worth, even if you’re not quite ready to sell. If you’re curious, consider answering a few questions to receive a free home evaluation!
7) Do you have any references I can speak to?
These days, most people read online reviews before making a major purchase. We believe that when you’re selling an investment as big as your house, the same logic should apply. If you’re thinking of hiring a Realtor to sell your home, find out what working with them is really like. A professional should have no problem connecting you with sellers they’ve served in the past. We do it for potential clients all the time! If you’re interested in learning more about how we help ensure selling success, you can do so here.
Have questions about the home-selling process? We’d love to answer them—get in touch to get the ball rolling!